SUMMER IS COMING
By Lori Elbert, Worship Assistant
Summer is right around the bend and, for me, summer always brings thoughts of camp to mind. “What camps will my kids go to?” always leads to thoughts of my own time at youth camps in the hot West Texas sun: playing kickball, swimming, learning more about God, and drawing closer in my relationship with Him.
Mark Angleton (Director of Student Ministries) and I recently had a conversation about why camp plays such an important role in the spiritual development of our kids. One of the reasons that we came up with is that at camp people are intentional about looking for God. Everything focuses on God, His love for us and our relationship with Him. At Camp Loucon every activity begins with prayer and ends with prayer. Because of that, people expect to hear from God. They expect those moments when God really seems to be in the room with them, sitting next to them, speaking directly to them.
As an adult, I have found it harder to find moments like those and I think I know the reason why.
I don’t make the time to look and listen for God like I should. I don’t make the time to be intentional in focusing my mind and heart on God. Times of retreat like the one at Valaterra are so valuable and so treasured but so few and far between. A week away from the distractions of media, work, chores, and everyday life can be almost impossible to come by in my life. But do I have to go away from my everyday life to hear God?
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. JOHN 1:14
The word “dwelt” means Jesus came and lived right in the middle of the mess of humanity, right in the middle of where we are right now. We are always thinking that we have to go find God when the truth is God has done everything, God continues to do everything to find us right here and right now. We just need to be intentional about looking with open eyes and hearts to see him. We just need to live in expectation that God is going to show up in our everyday lives.
Rest assured God is still speaking. God speaks through the scriptures, through the Church, through creation, through other people — friends, family, and strangers. God is constantly reaching out to us, and we do not see because we are not looking. As summer approaches I am going to try to be intentional about looking and listening for God here, in my everyday life. I am going to try look up from my busy-ness to see and hear what the creator of the universe is trying to tell me. I pray that this summer will be a time when we as individuals and as a church will look up to see where God is moving in the world, and listen to what God is saying. I suspect we will be amazed at what we will see and hear.
God of our Lord Jesus the Anointed, Father of Glory: I call out to You on behalf of Your people. Give them minds ready to receive wisdom and revelation so they will truly know You. Open the eyes of their hearts, and let the light of Your truth flood in. Shine Your light on the hope You are calling them to embrace. Reveal to them the glorious riches You are preparing as their inheritance. Let them see the full extent of Your power that is at work in those of us who believe, and may it be done according to Your might and power. ” EPHESIANS 1:17-19